North Cowichan homes get kitchen-waste recycling by May 1
Chicken bones, pizza crusts, milk cartons, even used Kleenexs, are headed for organics recycling in North Cowichan come May 1.
Taxpayers will save some $30,000 annually as greasy kitchen wastes are made into compost soil at Nanaimo's ICC vessel-treatment plant, instead of being shipped stateside to a dump, explained Kitchen Pitch-in spokeswoman Sarah Richardson.
"Garbage is expensive to deal with," she said during Wednesday's info-session at Crofton's community centre.
That's where Croftonians learned how to use two kitchen-organics bins, and other user materials, now being delivered to 9,300-odd homes.
Richard Buck's on board.
"All recycling's great" he said, welcoming council's $310,000 push to pull poultry wastes and other potentially stinky, sticky trash from the waste stream.
Here's how it works.
By April 21, residents will receive a Kitchen Pitch-in kit to use for a slate of wastes.
That list includes fruit and vegetable peelings, plus candy, cooked leftovers, fish waste, soggy rice, baked goods, coffee grounds and more.
The kit's seven-litre kitchen catcher — with a top that fastens shut — can be lined with paper towels, newspaper (not glossy flyers) or compostable, non-plastic bags sold at various local stores.
Kitchen stuff — plus bigger items such as paper cups and plates, fast-food paper, pizza boxes and soiled cardboard — is dropped into a big green bin, that boasts a clamp-lock to keep raccoons and rodents out.
That green drum can also be padded with compostable bags and newspaper.
"Bagless is better," noted Richardson.
The 46-litre green can is then wheeled be curbside for weekly emptying on a trash/dry recyclables' collection schedule already delivered to North Cowichanians.
Yard and pet wastes, Styrofoam, diapers, plastics, tin, and glass are banned from green bins.
Kitchen Pitch-in isn't offered to apartments, strata condos and businesses. Those owners must make their own recycling arrangements.
Green bins will usually have plenty of room, said Richardson, but she suggested folks to use weekly pick-up to avoid stockpiling and keep kitchen organics moving.
Green bins will be dumped into several new 'split-packer' trucks bought by North Cowichan council to replace outdated garage trucks.
That waste heads to the Bings Creek recycling depot, then to Duke Point's ICC plant launched in 2004.
Kitchen waste is made, without methane emissions, into what Richardson called saleable, grade-A, Alpine Soil.
"This (program) is great," said recycling booster Margaret Alexander, "because all this good organic stuff is getting mixed into our garbage right now."
Popular kitchen organics recycling systems started in Ladysmith in 2006, and in Duncan a year ago.
Crofton's Shelley Bailey said she and her family have waited for kitchen organics recycling for years, and believed Kitchen Pitch-in is tax money well spent.
"We pay for what's shipped out (to Washington) and we want to help the environment," she said, disgusted at backwoods dumping.
"It's a certain mentality," Richardson said of those trash delinquents.
Saltair, and regional areas south of the Cowichan River aren't involved in Kitchen Pitch-in — yet.
"But call your politicians because they're the ones who can add your area," said Richardson.
For more information
North Cowichan's Kitchen Pitch-in info-session schedule is as follows:
April 11, 3 to 7 p.m., North Cowichan municipal hall, 7030 Trans-Canada Highway
April 18, 3 to 7 p.m., Maple Bay Fire Hall, 1230 Maple Bay Rd.
April 25, 4:30 to 8:30 p.m., Mesachie Room, Island Savings community centre, Duncan
For more, call 250-746-3201